Welcome to the Poorhouse - a pointless bloggy site with news, views and opinion on stuff.

Tesco redefines "local"

Tesco, the life-ruling supermarket that increasingly builds anywhere and sells anything, does of course have the token trendy corporate social responsibility ethos plastered all over its promo materials.

One such outward aspect of these amazing new policies is that of regional sourcing. In an attempt to mass-outdo the various farmers' markets, organic box delivery schemes, growing stuff yourself and other such means to a virtuous end, they have a "localchoice" option for some products.

Setting up IMAP between Google Apps and Windows Mobile 5 Outlook Mobile

Well, for a while, the lovely email solution that is Gmail> (aka Googlemail), and the custom-domain Google Apps variant, didn’t seem to be getting much in the way of new features, despite big upgrades by its main competitors. Recently though, things have changed. We can look forward to a faster interface, a better contacts management solution, more storage space and, perhaps most excitingly in the eyes of the Poorhouse, IMAP.

IMAP, the Internet Message Access Protocol, is a technology allowing offline mail programs such as Outlook, Thunderbird et al. to read and manipulate their mail. Yes, Gmail has had an alternative technology, POP3, for a long, long while, albeit a rather dodgy implementation in some ways, but IMAP has the bonus of being able to keep in sync with the web-based Gmail proper. For instance, unlike POP3, if you read a message through an IMAP client then it will appear as read when you access Gmail or Google Apps over the web. You can move the messages between labels (usually termed folders under IMAP), delete them, star them and so on.

Introducing...the iRack!

Given that, oooh, eleven sixteenths of this pointless site is about nerdy geek-things, and the other eighteen twentieths consists of rambling rants about the evils of the Bush cabal, you will be unsurprised to hear that the Poorhouse quite liked the below video.

Combining the razzamatazz of Apple launching its nine-millionth nigh-on-identical iPod upgrade and the upper limits of American mispronunciation satire, check out the fabulous premiere of the iRack.

No evidence to suggest extension of imprisonment without trial is useful...but we still want it

Jacqui Smith, Home Secretary in the UK, has recently been giving evidence to the Home Affairs Committee investigating the latest raft of arguably rash and dictator-esque counter-terrorism proposals. One in particular the Government likes to harp on about forever is allowing detention without trial for a good long period of time. 90 days is one favourite figure of theirs.

Yep, they claim that it is fine, in a civilised democracy, to allow people to be locked up for 3 months without any charges being brought against them, any appearance in court or the other checks and balances against abuse that the legal system should maintain. It's nothing new mind, a couple of years ago the 90 days suggestion led to Blair's first ever defeat in the House of Commons.

Time change

Britons be aware! Time has moved backwards. Don't get excited now, the Poorhouse is not about to reveal details of a successful attempt at Tardis-esque time travel. Rather the UK has - or should have - moved its clocks back an hour, and re-entered the Greenwich Mean Time timezone rather than the British Summer Time malarkey.

It is however very confusing, and despite assurances from nearest and dearest that it really isn't that complicated, the Poorhouse does get a little confused and feels better announcements need making in order to avoid embarrassing mistakes the day after.

People do not assess risk very logically

The Poorhouse was recently reading a study that showed just how illogical people are, even when the logicalness at first sight seems simplistic to adhere to. Furthermore, it specifically concerning the topic of risk assessment of major terrorist attacks, there are present and clear dangers as to decision makers falling prey to such logicalities.

Not only do we not really want to get blown up by being silly enough to ignore the risk, it is also vital not to think too much of the risk given certain politicians' likings for discarding civil liberties and instilling military-rule-esque regimes amongst the poor, innocent, ignorant civilian population that we apparently consist of. As a bonus, it also shows how the potential bias inherent in survey responses needs to be taken with even more seriousness than the average layperson might think.

Using the Gmail Mobile App with Google Apps accounts

Update: Google have now released a version of the Gmail Mobile App for Google Apps accounts on devices other Blackberries, so the information in this article is largely out of date. Visit http://m.google.com/a from your phone to download it.

Google Apps is a lovely way to get your email, combining the loveliness of the normal Gmail interface with the ability to use your own domain names properly, without any of this Outlook "poorhouse@company.com on behalf of poorhouse123@gmail.com" nonsense. And it's free! They also recently upgraded the email storage you get for free to that of a normal Gmail account, currently 3805 MB.

But there is one super-useful feature missing from the Google Apps product that you do get with standard Gmail - support for the Gmail Mobile App, a much nicer way to interact with your email from your (Java-enabled) phone or PDA than the standard web interface. Sadly it doesn't support Google Apps mail - but with a little trickery, it can.

Free Wii glee

Yay for the Nintendo Wii. Now it has its own version of Mario Party there really isn't any reason not to own one...assuming you don't mind the way it plays it part in many vicious and violent injuries. And now even the health-hazard aspect of the gaming glory is at risk.

The far-flung lump of hard plastic known as a Wiimote now comes with a jacket, both to aid grip and lessen the physical imprint of inadvertent blows. Those of us vaguely-earlyish adopters need not suffer though - Nintendo's handing them out like candy.

Employers are evil: check your wage and holidays

The evil capitalistic employers that most of us British subjects are forced to work under to get by do, of course, often like to give you the worst of everything they think they can get away with. Worst pay, worst holidays, worst working conditions and so on. Not to say the Government really does that much to help make your life something other than based on wage-slavery, but here and there they do specify legal minimums of the good stuff.

If you are the typical minimum wage minimum holiday type employer then the amounts have just gone up. Make sure you check that your employer is treating you (minimumly) right.

The difference between Poorhouse and a cockroach narrows

Although no specific memory is held, there is every chance the Poorhouse has been called a "cockroach" in his short time on this planet so far. There is, as a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found, at least one obvious similarity.

Both have brains that really do not work well in the morning.

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